9 ways to make your Knoxville house sell faster without cutting the price.

Posted by Jim Lee, REALTOR® @ 6:59 pm, June 27th, 2010  

You hear a lot these days about lower price, lower price, and lowest price as the only way to get a house sold.

Here are 9 things you can do that will make your house stand out from the crowd, appeal to more potential buyers, and probably sell faster. None of them have anything to do with cutting the price.

  1. Curb appeal, curb appeal, curb appeal! I can’t emphasize this one enough. Buyers have to be attracted to your home to want to see it. I’ve had lots of buyers say: “Let’s pass this one buy.” when we’ve pulled up to a home that was not attractive from the street.
  2. Bright, shiny, and inviting entry. Once you get buyers out of the car and walking up to your front door, you want to continue to set a good tone for your showing. Make sure your front entry is spotless, sweep away the cobwebs over your door, clean front door, paint if necessary, bright, shiny new door hardware if necessary, a new light fixture if the old one is rusty. All these things go a long way towards keeping the mood for showing positive.
  3. PAINT! Biggest selling bang for your buck possible. Neutral paint is the word of the day, no bright or funky colors. A fresh, uniform coat of paint throughout your house if needed will bring a faster sale and more dollars in your pocket.
  4. Your kitchen. Lots of Realtors and buyers say the kitchen is what caused the sale. De-clutter your counter tops, cabinets, pantries, and storage space so buyers can see it.
  5. DEEP CLEANING! It’s gotta be not just spotless but “white glove” inspection clean. No grease on kitchen appliances, bathrooms including tubs, showers, and sinks spotless and clean smelling, all light fixtures wiped down or washed including  the bulbs, clean the blades on your ceiling fans, cobwebs from along ceilings and underneath. In fact it will likely pay you to hire a professional house cleaner to do the job for you.
  6. Straighten up,  “lean out” and neaten all your storage areas especially your closets. Don’t forget the fresh paint here too.
  7. Let the sun shine in. All blinds and shades should be open for showing even in the evenings. Of course your windows need to be included in the deep cleaning too.
  8. Get a pre-sale home inspection. This will alert you to potential problem areas you might not be aware of and let you fix or repair them at your leisure and also prevent a buyer from using some minor issue as a negotiating tool.
  9. No funky odors or smells. This one is tough because you live there every day and some odors might not be apparent to you. Ask a friend, neighbor, or real estate professional to give your home the “smell test” to see if there might be something there you’re not picking up on. Don’t get carried away with scents to mask odors; too much is almost as bad as the odors you’re trying to cover up. Get rid of the cause of the odor.

You can find lots selling tips as well as get a free copy of my 52 page e-book titled “450 Ideas To Help Your Home Sell Faster” at www. KnoxvilleHomeCenter.com or just send a blank email to [email protected]

Knoxville, Tennessee real estate transfers – week of Feb. 5, 2010

Posted by Jim Lee, REALTOR® @ 4:47 pm, February 7th, 2010  

The closed sales from the Knox County Register of Deeds is out today so let’s see what happened in the first week of February, 2010.

Knoxville tennessee real estate listings of homes for sale, condos, land, and commercial properties.

Knox County real estate transfers

We’re up to 116 this week. Still short of the 150 we were averaging in 2009 but a little better than the 108 we had last week.

It’s still a bit early in the year to begin saying things are getting better but some number and trends are encouraging.

Knoxville median sales prices

As the graph above illustrates a slight uptick in our median sales price.

While the average price per square feet is fairly flat.

Knoxville average price per square foot

Knoxville, TN real estate transfers for the week of January 31st

Posted by Jim Lee, REALTOR® @ 9:35 pm, January 31st, 2010  
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West Hills all brick rancher in absolute move in condition. $209,500, call to see it today.

Today is the last day of January 2010 and the last published real estate transfer report for that month from the Knox County Register of Deeds. So how did we do? Let’s take a look.

knoxville tn real estate listings property homes and houses sole

Knox County TN real estate transfers

I count 108 property transfers for the past week. In 2009 we were averaging around 150 or so a week.

Historically Knoxville area real estate sales have started to rise early in each new year, building to a peak in the summer before starting a dip down as fall and winter approaches. Will the same thing happen this year? The next couple of months will tell that story and I’ll keep you posted right here.

visit www.KnoxvilleHomeCenter.com to see all of the greater Knoxville area listings for sale as well as great selling and buying tips.

Listing price – Knoxville

Knoxville Homes For Sale

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Crystal ball gazings for the Knoxville, Tennessee real estate market.

Posted by Jim Lee, REALTOR® @ 12:23 pm, January 3rd, 2010  
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This delightful duplex is near UT and has 1 two BR and 1 1 BR units, will cash flow.

Happy New Years fellow Knoxvillians; it’s now officially 2010.

Following is the latest report from the Knox County Register of Deeds office for real estate transfers (sales) completed last week (January 3, 2010).

Knoxville, Tennessee real estate transfers.

I counted 88 property transfers in the past week. That’s a low number compared to the 150 we have been averaging for all of 2009 but I believe the holidays had more to do with that than other factors.

Are you like me and wondering what the new year will bring for the Knoxville real estate market?

Here’s what I think is likely to happen:

  • Interest rates are going to rise a little. I believe we will be looking at 6% or so at some point in 2010.
  • It’s anyone’s guess what will happen when the tax credit expires at the end of April 2010. That credit has been driving the low end of our market for several months now so it can’t help but have a negative impact when it’s gone.
  • The Knoxville Area Association of Realtors 2009 sales report for the year will be out around the 15th of this month so we will be able to compare 2009 to past years. However we already know the numbers for the last 11 months of 2009 so I’m not expecting any surprises in December sales.
  • There are currently 3,332 active residential listings in Knox County.
  • There is also 521 “sale pending” listings in Knox County. I’m wondering how many of those are for real and how many are listings where the sale has fallen through and the status was never changed. I know I have one lease purchase set to close next month that has been there since July of 2009.
  • I think the volume of sales will rise in 2010; how much is anyone’s guess. 10-20% sounds realistic to me.
  • I think the price appreciation will remain flat with maybe a slight rise but very slight if it happens.
  • One in seven households with mortgages was either in foreclosure or delinquent on payments at the end of September, the most recent data available from the Mortgage Bankers Association. Some owners are defaulting because they have lost their jobs. Expect more foreclosures in 2010.
  • The biggest factor missing from the real estate market (and other markets as well) is confidence. Investors and most everyone else are just unsure about what the short term future brings. Nervous investors tend to set on their assets and not invest them.

It will be interesting to revisit this post in about 6 months and compare my predictions to what has actually happened.

Nothing to do with real estate and just for fun, here’s a list of people and things with roots in Knoxville, Tennessee.

There are lots of awesome homes for sale if your in the market. If you’re thinking of selling houses are selling, 88 sold just this past week and that’s a low number compared to the 150 average we’ve had for all of 2009.

Visit www.KnoxvilleHomeCenter.com to see all of the Knoxville area homes for sale, find great tips to make your home sell faster and for more money, and of course, contact me to buy or sell.

Best wishes to all for a very happy and prosperous 2010!

Knox County Register of Deeds real estate transfers for the week of Dec. 13th

Posted by Jim Lee, REALTOR® @ 9:37 am, December 14th, 2009  
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235 real estate transfers recorded in Knox County, Tennessee this past week. I believe that’s only the 4th time in 2009 we’ve had over 200 sales recorded in 1 week! A good sign for the local real estate market and sellers and buyers.

Here’s a graph showing the breakdown.

Lots of real estate transfers recorded in the past week

Lots of real estate transfers recorded in the past week

As has been true all year, the $100,000 to $150,000 price range continues to dominate the market, there were 70 recorded sales in that category for the past week.

And the higher end, that’s the over $500,000 price point, continues to languish.

As most everyone is aware now, the $8,000 tax credit for new homebuyers has been extended until April 30, of 2010. I’m still convinced that is driving a very significant percentage of the lower price sales. Some say as much as 40% of those sales are qualifying for the credit.

One plus in the extension is that it now applies to sellers if they buy another home and you do not necessarily have to sell your current home to qualify. That category can get up to a $6,500 credit when they buy.

Housing sales in the greater Knoxville area remain fairly strong relative to our usual seasonal downturn which historically happens about July/August of each year and declining through the winter months until the spring market starts coming to life.

However houses are bought and sold every day of the year and it looks like more than normal are going to be bought and sold through the next few days of this year and into 2010.

Good news for the Knoxville, Tennessee real estate market.

Here’s a link to a great article by Marc Roth jokingly titled “If you don’t buy a house now, you’re broke or stupid.”

And here’s the place to go find that house to buy: www.KnoxvilleHomeCenter.com

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Knox County, TN Register of Deeds transactions for the week of December 6th

Posted by Jim Lee, REALTOR® @ 1:02 pm, December 6th, 2009  

I counted the property transfers published by the Knox County Register of Deeds for the previous week and found 186 which is a little above the 150 or so average we’ve had for all of 2009 so far.

It seems the extension of the homebuyers tax credit is continuing to drive the lower end of our market (the $200,000 and under price points) and the upper end remains sluggish.

Knox County TN closed transactions

Knox County TN closed transactions

I’ve been reading lots of encouraging news about real estate markets all across the county and how they’re seeing increases in sales. Our market has shown one encouraging sign in the past 2 months in that sales have remained high instead of taking their usual seasonal downturn in the fall and winter months.

Let’s hope that trend continues, in past recessions real estate has been the force that drove the recovery.

Here’s some more statistical data from the National Association of Realtor’s research department.

Tennessee building permits

Tennessee building permits

As you can see from the huge drop off in building permits new construction is still in deep trouble.

What drives local supply and demand

What drives local supply and demand

And finally how Knoxville is doing relative to the rest of Tennessee

Comparing Knoxville sales to U.S. sales

Comparing Knoxville sales to U.S. sales

Visit www.KnoxvilleHomeCenter.com to see all of Knoxville’s homes for sale.

Please feel free to comment or ask any real estate related question you may have.

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Knox County, TN Register of Deeds report week of Nov. 29th

Posted by Jim Lee, REALTOR® @ 2:52 pm, November 30th, 2009  
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Here’s the latest report from the Knox County, Tennessee Register of Deeds real estate transactions.

closed real estate transactions for the week of November 29th

closed real estate transactions for the week of November 29th

There were 157 transactions during the past week; that’s about on par for the 150 average we’ve had for 2009.

And as usual the $100,000 to $150,000 price points dominate the number with almost twice as many as any other category.

Even though we have not seen the normal seasonal slowdown yet, I think it may be beginning in December.

Real estate in Knox County and most everywhere else in the United States is in a very highly volatile state right now because of the economy, unemployment, and a lack of consumer confidence. I believe that will be exacerbated this month by the Christmas season. People with holiday parties and shopping foremost in their minds are typically not in the house buying mode at the same time.

According to the Knoxville Realtors Multiple Listing Service there are 3,727 active residential listings and 976 condos in all price points. Here’s a graph showing the current, active listings broken down by price points.

Current Knox County active listings by price points

Current Knox County active listings by price points

By comparing the two graphs you can easily see there’s a huge disparity between the number of current, active listings and those that actually sell.

This also demonstrates that now is an excellent time to buy a house or condo. Excellent fiancing is still available and there is a huge selection of homes for sale. Visit www.KnoxvilleHomeCenter.com to see all the current active listings listed above plus all the other counties served by the Knoxville Area Association of Realtors